Chicago Blackhawks: 2020-21 will be good for development

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The 2020-21 season is about development for the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Chicago Blackhawks are not going to be a very good team in 2020-21. The season is finally shaping up to begin on January 13th and then hopefully hockey starts to see itself get back to the way things used to be. For the Hawks, they still have Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane on their team so they will still have a chance on most nights but things are getting worse. Their defense has been bad for a while now and Corey Crawford or Robin Lehner aren’t there aymore.

Of course, when your team is bad you hope that there are still things to watch for. Watching Toews and Kane will always be exciting and they are a reason to watch in their own right. In addition to them, there are so many young players that we need to see growth from over the next few years and it starts this year.

Kirby Dach, Alex DeBrincat, and Adam Boqvist have all already made their NHL debuts and in the case of DeBrincat, played a few seasons in the pros. Those guys are all players that the Blackhawks hope to develop even further and that starts this season. In the case of Dach and DeBrincat, they are both guys with star potential in this league.

DeBrincat struggled to score goals during the 2019-20 season at the rate we were getting used to seeing. He didn’t have bad numbers by any means but he was about half as good as the year before. Dach struggled in his teenage season as well but came back to the bubble looking like an entirely different player. As the third overall pick in the 2019 draft, he has the potential to be a seriously good player. Boqvist might not have number one defenseman potential but he could be a great puck moving power play guy.

There are also prospects in the system that we need to see develop that haven’t played an NHL game yet. Ian Mitchell comes to mind right away. He was brilliant to end his college career and the Hawks are hoping he shows big things in his rookie NHL season. He has captain potential based on his leadership abilities so that is excitng as well. It would be nice if he turns out to be a guy who can lead on and off the ice while playing great defense.

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None of this is going to click full-time in 2021 but it just needs to start it’s development. The Hawks have leaders that have developed together enough to win multiple championships and now they will be relied on to mentor younger players. With the defense and goaltending in shambles the way that it currently is, you shouldn’t expect a lot of wins but you can expect to see some good play from players who are very important to the future of the club.